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7 Great Tips for Beginner Artists!

Hello! I hope you are having a beautiful day. I wanted to share with you some of the tips I have picked up over the years that have helped me dramatically improve my art work.

ELAN (English Language Arts Network) Brochure and promotional Web project. Hands of artists in their discipline.

1. Draw Bigger
One thing I tend to notice is that many beginners draw VERY small! This makes it very difficult to draw in details or if you make a mistake. Be bold! Don’t be afraid to take up the entire piece of paper with your drawing.

2. Plan your Composition
It is great to get into the habit of planning out how you want your drawing to look before you get started. You can do this by creating little thumbnails and playing around with what arrangement looks the best.

3. Use a 2H or 4H Pencil
If you tend to press down a lot while you are drawing and find it hard to erase away your outlines, I would highly recommend using a 2H or H4 pencil. There lead is lighter than a regular number 2 pencil.

4. Study them Curves!
What helped me improve my art when I was younger was that I thought of objects/ forms as organic lines. Study the object you are drawing and mimic the curves and contours you see.

5. It’s Okay to Guess!
I think many people are under the impression that when you are drawing, you have to get it right the first time. This couldn’t be further from the truth. If you are drawing a face, you don’t have to get the placement perfect with your line drawing. It is perfectly okay to guess and move things around as you go.

6. Refine your edges, not define your edges
This is another thing I notice that people who are starting to learn how to draw tend to do. Try to avoid creating stark outlines around the objects/subjects within your drawing. In some art styles, this is completely fine & fits with the style. However, if you want your drawing to looks realistic I would avoid creating noticeable outlines around your figures.

7. Create a variety of Strokes
You can add so much interest to a drawing by adding varied line strokes.

Hope these simple tips come in handy! -Happy drawing!

3 Marker Challenge | Halloween Edition

Have you seen my new video on YouTube yet? If not, then go check it out! Last Friday I posted another 3 marker challenge but this time it’s Halloween Edition. SPOOOOOKY! Go ahead and subscribe if you haven’t because I upload every single Friday. Looking forward to you joining the family. =)


My YouTube Channel:

I have such talented fans!

An amazing fan/friend sent me a drawing that he did of me and it’s amazing. I absolutely love it! Thank you James. You are so talented.

Holly Hearts

This drawing below is another drawing someone did of me a couple weeks ago! They are both fantastic!


Johnny Depp Commission

This is a commission I did for a recent client of mine, Lindsey. She wanted a portrait of Johnny Depp and I was super excited because out of all the celebrities I have drawn, Johnny Depp wasn’t one of them. This portrait is drawn in charcoal on 8×10 sketch paper.

After shipping the portrait off to her, she recieved it a few days later and tweeted this picture to me on Twitter. She had framed it and put it out to display like it deserves! This truly fills my artist soul with pure joy when I get to see the client side by side with there art piece. I’m so happy she loves it.

Career Paths for Creatives

I think that MANY of us as artists go through a rough patch when it comes to carving out a fulfilling career path. We are often told that “artists don’t make money” and that we need to be looking for more realistic work. Although these words might be said with good intentions, it can be some of the worst-fear triggered advice you can receive. When we hear things like this, we automatically shut down. We start to re-think our goals, what is “possible” for us, and look for something safe.

I’ve created a brainstorming exercise to help simulate the process I went through that lead me to where I am today. The goal of this exercise is to get you to start thinking about fields you may want to align yourself with. Here we go!
Step 1: I want you to brainstorm all of your hobbies and areas of interest and write them down. For instance on my paper, I would write video games or reading since that is something I love. Write down as many as you can think of.

Step 2: Think about causes or missions you align yourself with. Are you anti-bullying? Do you want to fight for animal rights? Are you on a mission to educate young children? Whatever that cause may be, jot it down.

The point of this exercise was to get you thinking about ways you can combine your interests, and stumble upon a field that you love. Instead of switching the direction of your career field, I want you to explore new artistic opportunities that you may have never considered before. Hope this sparked your synapses.

Holly Knece (Holly Hearts Art)

Overcoming Your Creative Blocks


Are you going through a creative dry spell? You are not alone. All artists face this & it happens more often then you’d think. The good news is: it will pass! Creative blocks come & go. Whenever I come face to face with this problem, I get past it by: I give myself time to reflect and slowly integrate myself back into the creative process.

Taking a short break is not a bad thing. Sometimes we need time to reboot, step away from everything, and reflect. The reason why most of us feel creatively blocked is because we are unknowingly attacking our creativity. When we are hyper critical, we scare away creativity. In order to allow creativity to come to us, we need to be okay with making mistakes. By taking time to unwind and let go of the need to be perfect, you welcome creativity.

Do you have any tips for getting through a creative dry spell? Feel free to share with me!

How I Started Drawing Realistic Portraits

The story about how I got into drawing portraits is kind of a sad one but first let’s talk about what I would draw when I was younger.

I remember when my mother brought me home my very first sketchbook in elementary school and the first thing I drew in it was a girl. I’m not saying portrait because it was a very bad drawing of a girl. Standard round eyes and ‘U’ shaped smile. (Thank goodness I got better!)

All through elementary and middle school I would draw fantasy artwork. ALL fantasy! I loved it! Fairies, dragons, elves, video game characters. I had sketchbooks after sketchbooks of only these things. I would go into DeviantArt and search fantasy artwork and try my best to mimic what they drew. I think this is the reason why I can look at pictures and draw them perfectly on paper exactly how they look. I see every line, width and length, and transfer it on my blank sketch paper. I got pretty good at that!

I took art classes every single year of schooling. Around my Junior year, I started noticing everybody drawing anime and manga and I absolutely hated it!!!! If I saw someone drawing an anime character in art class, It irritated me. This pushed me into drawing realistically because no one else was doing it. I’m just being honest here and I DO NOT feel this way anymore. I draw manga myself now.

Now to the serious part, graduation day arrived (2011) and I was so happy even though it was 100 degrees on the football field.. After the ceremony was over, my mom, step dad, my boyfriend Daren and I were heading back to Daren’s house and his family tragically lost there bulldog Dozer just minutes before we pulled in. His family was devastated. After some days had passed, I decided to draw a portrait of Dozer for the family in charcoal (which I was first introduced to in my high school art class.) They absolutely loved it and were in tears. This made me realize how great and important it can be to have such a personalized memory of a family pet or loved one in a drawing. Darens mother told me that I had a talent to capture the likeness/emotion in a photograph.
This is when I created my Facebook page which was originally called Hollys Pet Portraits, then to Hollys Charcoal Portraits and has grown into being called Hollys Hearts Art and I welcome all of you to be part of my growing family and to make room in your life for the world of art. You never know when it might change your life.

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